Subject: UNOTIL Daily Media Review 03 February 2006

[Poster's note: Repeats of international articles already sent out to the east-timor list (info@etan.org) have been removed.]

UNOTIL

Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Daily Media Review Friday, 03 February 2006

National Media Reports

Dr. Ximenes: Defamation provision not a danger to democracy

President of the Court of Appeal, Dr. Claudio Ximenes, has expressed his opinion as a jurist that the article on defamation in the Penal Code does not pose a danger to democracy. Speaking to journalists on Thursday after meeting with President Gusmao regarding the Code, Ximenes said that many other countries where democracy is alive and well including Spain, Italy and Germany, have defamation provisions in their law. He said that there are over three hundred articles in the code, and the article on defamation is just one of these, so it should not be a major concern. He stated that in his opinion the article does not restrict press freedom, curtail citizen’s rights, or violate the Constitution. (TP)

Horta relates difficulties in filling Ambassador posts

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Jose Ramos Horta has stated that it is difficult to identify people with the capacity to fill several vacant Ambassador posts despite trying for a year to find the appropriate people to fill the positions. The Minister expressed his frustration in filling the Ambassadorial positions for Malaysia, Bangkok, Mozambique, and the Consulate-General in Bali. He said that if it were up to him, he would not take into consideration all the protests against those that have been identified. Since it is up to the President and the Prime Minister to identify suitable candidates, he cannot do anything. (TP)

Lecturer: Don’t bend too much towards Indonesia

The recent fatal shooting of three ex-militia at the border has the potential to impact negatively on the Timor-Leste economy. For this reason, the Government is attempting to identify a mechanism that will present a satisfactory solution for the citizens of both countries, in particular the border populations. However, according to Aristides Afonso, Economics lecturer from the Timor-Leste National University, it is not beneficial to depend too much on Indonesia. Speaking to TP on Thursday, Afonso explained that if a conflict arises and there is not enough political maturity from either side to resolve the problem appropriately, imports from Indonesia might be cut off. If that were the case, it would be necessary to look for an alternative source of imports, and for this reason it is important not to depend too much on Indonesia. He said that other countries that could be used as possible sources for imports include Australia, the Philippines, and Singapore. (TP)

PNTL Inspector General, Paulo Martins: “Don’t create divisions within UIR

PNTL Inspector General, Paulo Martins appealed to the members of Rapid Intervention Unit not to create divisions based or “Nationalism” within the UIR unit since it is the only unit that exists, JND reported on 03 February. (JND)

Allegation of corruption within the Minister of Environment and Development

Director of LABEH, Christopher Henry Samson, has reportedly made allegations of corruption within the Ministry of Environment and Development. Mr Samson reportedly stated the accusations to journalists on his way to hand over a report on the corruption to the Office of Inspector-General, Mariano Lopez da Cruz at the Government Palace. The information is a result of observations of activities that occurred within the Ministry. Although Civil Society has no authority to investigate, it has the right to observe and report any suspicions to the Office of Inspector-General for further investigation. Minister of Environment, Abel Ximenes, responded by stating that it is up to everyone to put forward their evaluation but his Ministry, including his staff, have done 70 to 100 percent of the work. He added that if it is proven that corruption exists, then the person who committed the act should be held accountable or responsible for his/her actions. (JND, STL)

RTTL News Headlines 02-02-2006

Ø Penal Code does not prejudice democracy; Speaking to journalists after meeting President Xanana Gusmao on Thursday, the President of the Court of Appeal, Claudio Ximenes reportedly stated that the Penal Code, which is yet to be promulgated by the President, does not pose any threat to Democracy in Timor-Leste. In particular, he said, the articles on defamation defend the interests of those offended and also enhance social communication in this country.

Ø Expulsion of six PNTL officers; The Superior Council of PNTL will expel 5 officers and rank down another for alleged misconducts. PNTL General Commander, Paulo Fatima Martins, informed reporters that the six men are 3 from Covalima, 2 from Oecusse and 1 Sub-Inspector from Dili. He added that the Interior Minister has issued expulsion orders that would be implemented this month.

Ø Airport Security System inaugurated: On Thursday, The Interior Minister Rogério Tiago Lobato inaugurated the Airport Security system at the Dili International Airport. The system was reportedly supported by the Australian Federal Police, AFP. On the same day, the Minister also swore in the New Commander for the Police Rapid Intervention Unit, UIR, Inspector Armando Monteiro, who was previously stationed in Baucau.

Ø Inauguration of F-FDTL’s barracks in Baucau; In Baucau, the Minister for State Administration, Ana Pessoa, inaugurated the new Barracks of F-FDTL on Wednesday. Speaking to journalists after the inauguration ceremony, the Defense Force Commander, Brigadier General Taur Matan Ruak said that there should be no discrimination within the Defense Force. Meanwhile, The Commander of the First Battalion Lieutenant Colonel Falur Rate Laek told journalists that the new barracks would serve as a step to reduce problems faced by the Force personnel.

Ø From the Districts, 35 bas rice disappeared in Liquica: From the Districts, 35 bags of rice reportedly went missing at the District Administration office in Liquica. These bags of rice were part of a total of 100 bags of rice that were provided by the Ministry for Labour and Community Reinsertion to help the vulnerable. However, it was reported that the 35 bags were instead used for a youth activity that took place at the District FRETILIN office.

National News Sources

Timor Post (TP) Radio Timor-Leste (RTL) Suara Timor Lorosae (STL) Diario Tempo (DT) Diario Nacional Seminario Lia Foun (LF) Televisaun Timor-Leste [TVTL]

These Items Do Not Reflect the Position or Views of the United Nations. UNOTIL Public Information Office


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